Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Trip Experience to Monticello and Fallingwater

The experience of this trip was very enlightening and came at perfect timing.  I was very inspired by both of the houses we toured.  The first house was the home of one of our most historic presidents Thomas Jefferson.  The name of his house is Monticello.  Mr. Jefferson was very intelligent and a talented man.  He constantly kept Monticello under renovation, and is quoted as saying "...architecture is my delight, and putting up, and pulling down, one of my favourite amusements."  This can be seen throughout touring the Monticello home, full of original artwork and inventions.  The next house we toured and my personal favorite between the two was Fallingwater, located at Bear Run, PA.  Fallingwater was originally a home that was designed for the famous Kauffman family.  They needed a new vacation home and employed architect Frank Lloyd Wright to do the job.  Mr. Wright delivered to them something new to the architectural scene and is now held as one of the most recognized and toured homes of the nation.  Upon arrival to Fallingwater it is out in the woods out of site from the main road.  It is a building that is very in touch with nature and blends in with its landscape like it is apart of it.  The home is constructed over a beautful waterfall and is comparable to dresser drawers located in the mountain sliding out at different distances. 

Reading Response 11

Blog Post 11 Modernism: Style and Substance

Examples of Art Deco influencing architectuPicture Source:                                
Villa Savoye showing all five rules of modern architecture by Le Corbusier
The rise of modernism has evolved over time.  Different movements taking place progressed its dominance into what we see in today's architecture and mainstream.  Rules have been made and broken and after viewing the different movements and the buildings and objects that were apart of these particular styles, people have been  always craving and wanting something new, but it really is something old but transformed and reinterpreted differently.  Kind of like fashion trends, and the saying that if you hold onto something long enough, eventually it will come back as a reformed trend or revived.  When I think of modernism I think of clean and simple lines, something very streamlined and without heavy ornamentation or too much color.  Anything basically that would date the object or space.  One timeless building that comes to mind when I think of a terrific example of modernism in architecture would be Villa Savoye in Poissy, a suburb of Paris, France. Built in 1929 by  Le Corbusier, an architect who got his start at an exhibition. Le Corbusier created a building with such timelessness and classic elegance that it holds as a staple to most if not all architecture lectures for future generations of designers.  Modernism helped get its start at these exhibitions another ingredient that helped push the envelope for the strive to find Modernism.  These exhibitions would let people see the newest and latest in everything from art, to new foods, and different cultures.  These exhibitions would draw people in from all over, and each time architecture changed its look and rules of what was most modern and new with the competition of countries to be the newest .  When looking at Villa Savoye it demonstrates the Five Points that Corbusier  stated as a means to new modernism.  The first is the use of pilotis, (elevating the mass from the ground).  The second is a free plan  When viewing the building it is hard to tell the date when it was built, because it looks as though it could have been constructed today in modern design. With the Art Deco movement following behind the Art Nouveau and Secession movements we see how designs have evolved.  Art Nouveau which can still be seen much throughout Europe was all about entertwining nature with design.  After the Art Nouveau movement we saw the emergence of the Secession Movement, which was very similar to the Art Nouveau style with its whiplash curvature detailings of objects found in nature.  Which at the time seemed like something new, but it harkened back to the rules and was similar to the building styles of the ancient Greeks.  Secession also incorporated streamlining and was all about materiality.  Some examples of the Secession movement and the buildings that were constructed during this time would e the Secession building designed by joseph maria olbricht.  and the Palace Stoclet, designed by Joseph Hoffman in Vienna Austria.  The arrival of the Art Deco movement came from l'exhibition de arts d`ecoratifs in Paris France around 1928.  With this exhibition performers and artists dressed in costumes and did very intricate dancing.  Their costumes were made of  geometrical patterns, circles being the main shape that took front stage center during the Art Deco movement.  All of these happening factor into and influence what we call modernism.  Designers today work hard to be modern to create the latest newest things, while also maintaining a timeless elegance in their work, so it can be viewed at anytime or date and still look amazing.  For example the Chrysler building in New York will always remain timeless and catch the eye. 

Reading Response 10

Blog Post 10

Reading Response 9

Blog Post 9

Reading Response 8

Reading Response 7

Blog Post 8

Monday, March 14, 2011

Blog Post 7: Comftorable Spaces (History and Theory of Design)

On this day we were to find spaces that are to be considered happy spots for us on campus.  From all the different spots visited, I chose this courtyard behind the Weatherspoon Art Museum.  This spot brings special memories for me when I first moved to Greensboro.  My first visit to this space was during the summer, when flowers were in full bloom.  It makes for a pleasant and peaceful spot for me with all the greenery and sculptures.  When I step into this space it is a full experience for the senses and it always inspires me in some way.  There is the fresh air lightly blowing and tickling the hair on my skin, the smell of plants and nature in the air fills my lungs.  There are also many places my vision catches as I examine my surroundings and take in every little detail from the brickwork patterns to the layout of the space and its sculptures and awesome gate entrance.  The sound system that changes periodically with different sounds, such as crickets fill the air which brings back memories of summer nights when I would leave my window open while sleeping and could hear the peaceful chirps of crickets in the night.  I am a lover of nature and all things involved with gardening which influenced my decision on this particular space.  It is like stepping into another world, you almost lose yourself in the space and forget for a moment you are on campus safely enclosed from the outside hustle and bustle of everyday life and traffic in Greensboro. 

Environmental Design II : Color Week Project

For color week, we were to find color combinations that complimented each other through a series of assignments.  We observed what colors would look like if you were to put a lighter/darker shade of color over the same shade.  Here are some pictures of my designs of the colors I chose to work with. With the first project we were to choose a shade and show how it goes from darkest to lightest with a shade that showed the transition in the middle. Then we did a color chart with carefully chosen hues that went from the darkest area of the color wheel transitioning to the lightest.  The next was a representation of the different seasons.  For this project I decided to go with a weaving technique to tie the colors I used together.  Each box of weaving represented each season.  This project was very fun, and I learned a lot about the color process. Each project was carefully constructed, measured, and cut carefully with an X-acto knife. 

Monday, February 21, 2011

Reading Response 6: Theory and History of Design

Blog Post 6: Theory and History of Design

Structural Differences between the cathedrals in Amiens, France, and Cologne, Germany.  After looking at both cathedrals our group found that they were similar in alot of ways.  There were actually very little difference in the structure.  In Amiens, we found that the building was completed many years before the cathedral in Cologne was completed.  Although the cathedral in France was very focused it seemed on showing off its talents with the inside of the building as opposed to Germany, where the outside was more decorative than the inside.  These differences  could be because of many reasons.  It can be assumed by what was going on with the government and area at the time.  The church played a large part in their societies as being constructed as the largest building in the towns surrounding them.  These cathedrals were probably seen as a refuge from the craziness surrounding the outside as a place to gather and escape from the outside world.  Some of the differences I could see right away were the differences in ornamentation on the exterior, for example the flying buttresses.  The German cathedral had much more filigree and ornamentation on the outside compared to the inside.  The French cathedral was the exact opposite with much more ornamentation on the inside compared to the inside.  Some of the statues on the outside of the German cathedral appeared to have older male figures with beards.  The French cathedral had much younger men without beards with angelic faces on the outside. The difference inside the cathedrals were easily spotted on the view of the ceiling at the crossing.  The German cathedrals ceiling was very basic with its lines, and the French cathedral had a few more lines in its main square at the crossing.  I imagine those were there for extra support of the building.  Both buildings contain the cruciform style.  By German design their cathedrals were all designed with one main tower.  French cathedrals were mostly designed with 2 towers.  After viewing the photos for both cathedrals, you can see that the German cathedral is more pointy and darker in appearance, whereas the French cathedral is more box-like and the stone has a lighter hue to it. 

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Theory Reading 2 Discussion: IAR 102

For this discussion the class was shown the film Babette's Feast.  A Danish film about elderly sisters, one who wins a lottery of 10,000 francs.  Instead of spending the money on herself, she decides to give back and use the money to create a delicious dinner for her sister and their congregation for the pastors hundredth birthday. The cuisine was supposed to be a very authentic french dinner.  Since such an exotic dinner is full of precious and rich ingredients, the sisters and the congregation feel guilty about indulging in such a feast.  So as an agreement they decide to eat the meal, but not take any pleasure in it, or speak of the meal during the dinner.  The only guest that wasn't there for the agreement and was present for the dinner was the general.  So he became the only one who could comment on the dinner.  He described how great the food was and how it reminded him of Cafe Anglaise in Paris.  Turns out Babette was the old chef of Cafe Anglaise. One quote that stayed in my mind from the film would have to be by the general who commented that the food "was a love affair that made no distinction between bodily appetite and spiritual appetite."  Which makes sense to me because food can be very pleasing not just nutritionally and taste-wise.  It also can be spiritually uplifting and make us feel good, bring back memories of good times, etc.  Relationship to design and culture can definitely be important.  Different cultures have different cuisines, different ways of eating, etc.  All of these factors have to go into thought when planning a dinner, the guests have to be taken into consideration as well as the meal and what utensils will be used with the type of food chosen.  All of these things I have thought about so far for this project, it has proven to be challenging, but also a fun process that has expanded my imagination further in understand the dining experience. 

Theory Reading 1 Discussion : IAR 102

I believe that design is very important in the dining process.  Everything has to be well thought out and planned.  Everything from the dining ware, the setting, table, chairs all the way down to the lighting and music.  All of these things help influence the experience for someone.  Everything that will grab their senses and be delightful.  Design itself can alter a persons mood, conversation, and their overall being.  After writing the paper describing my setting for the dining table and dinner that would take place at it.  All of these things came into play with the story.  Things a normal person who hasn't thought about design would have overlooked in the process.  Through this semester I have learned that design has to appeal to the senses to be incredible and memorable.

Unit Summary 1 : Theory and History of Design

Reading Response 5: Theory and History of Design

Blog Post 4 : History and Theory of Design

Reading Response 4: Theory and History of Design

Haiku Poem: Blog Post 5 Theory and History of Design

After learning how architecture is frozen music. I didn't realize how buildings, structures and spaces have characteristics of a song until we looked at a few examples in class like the police and their song titled synchronicity.  The image was their album cover of a Rubik's cube.  The song symbolized the different colors of the cube and sort of shared the cubes characteristics.  Another example was the groovy image that went along with the Beatles' Sgt. Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band song. To test some of this our assignment as a group was to choose a picture and describe it in a poem and include some design vocabular. Throughout searching on the site Flickr, we found this photo.

Here is my Haiku:

Volumes of forms
amongst the sky of colors
to infinity

Dinner Party Space Paper

Joshua Boone
Environmental Design II

For my dinner party I like open spaces.  I picture the setting in an open airy environment like an atrium or a conservatory.  Inside I picture Turkish or Moroccan tiles for the flooring.  Within the space I imagine it being an oasis, a kind of escape from the metropolis surrounding it.  I want it to have an arched glass ceiling with touches of painted glass here and there.  Some curved glass curtain walls as well as some stone or tiled walls.  To keep the sunlight at bay I want lots of trees, plants, shrubs flowers, vines and herbs growing within this peaceful space.  The vegetation will be kept very green friendly and organic.  I picture a tall ceiling that has the ability to open and close so that birds can come and go freely and their chirping can be heard faintly throughout the space.  For my space, I love color, but my plants and flowers will construct a canvas for the background of color arrangements.  The fact that the space will be made of glass will help protect and support t the plant life during the changes of the seasons.  I imagine all sorts of pleasant fragrant smells entering the air like lavender, lilies and orange blossom.  I picture a peaceful fountain within the space that hold golden koi fish in the basin.  There will be walkways with benches and nooks throughout.  The main feature will be an open space where I will hold dinner parties.  The space will be perfect for these parties because nature is something everyone can appreciate and relate to on some level.  For the dinner party it will start around evening dusk so that the natural sunlight will be soft colorful and warm.  Candles and softly lit solar lamp posts will supply more light as it gets dark.  The social gathering can be people from different cultural backgrounds.  As an activity I can hold a gathering of flowers and herbs before the dinner.  Giving everyone a chance to pick a flower for the centerpiece or an herb they would like to be prepared in one of their courses of dinner.  The dinner will be prepared by a chef.  The sideboard near the dining space will have multipurpose.  For this dinner it will serve as a place to gather the flowers to be arranged and a place for the herbs to be collected for the chef.  During the time of the meal to be prepared there will be a cocktail hour where a variety of wine and beverages will be passed for the guests.  They will have a chance to stroll through the space and chat throughout the gardens.  I love music and I feel music helps set a mood for an atmosphere.  For this social gathering I picture some classical soft music for the background faintly being heard so it doesn’t overwhelm.  Or even a light performance of some instrumentalists and pianist.  When dinner time comes the food will be served at a round table set for around 10 people.  The centerpiece will be carefully orchestrated and chairs will be lightly cushioned and be rather upright so that everyone will be seen clearly for conversation.  The place settings will be carefully chosen to appeal to the guests.  There will be a water glass as well as both a red and white wine glass.  Throughout the courses wine will be offered to pair with the meal.  Each unused item will be properly removed or replaced by a server.  Each course will be something small with worldly influences that will be geared to please each guest that RSVP’d.  With dessert coffee or hot teas will be offered. 

Monday, February 7, 2011

Reading Response 3

With this reading I learned the importance of commodity, firmness and delight.  These are three important factors brought to our attention by the roman architect Vitruvius.  The element of function, something that on the surface, would appear most straightforward, but that, since the mid-twentieth century, has proved extremely troublesome. Function, or the pragmatic utility of an object- its being fitted to a particular use- was a criterion analyzed by such Greek philosophers as Plato, Aristotle, and Xenophon.  Until reading this passage in the Roth book, I didn't realize that the english language only has one word for function.  Even though like the Inuits who have many words for snow as opposed to just our one word for it.  We need variations to describe different kinds of function.  The alternative so far is to make compound words such as circulatory function or acoustical function.  After reading about function and its importance and taking all the factors of commodity, firmness and delight into the designing and building of a space I realized what all goes into the thought process of a building.  I now view buildings differently and try to understand where the designer was coming from and trying to understand their thought processes and reasons for things within the interior and on the exterior.  When we took the tour around campus to look at buildings and find circles I never realized how many circles there really are around campus, whether they are "crazy" circles or your traditional circle and what they represent.  Most places where you find a circle are gathering places for people.  Where they meet and greet and hold important functions.  The circle represents many things such as wholeness, and the universal symbol of unity.  Circles can be found everywhere in todays architecture as well as ancient architecture, such as stonehenge.  The same thing can be said for arches and domes.  These qualities can be found even in modern buildings.  The arch which was created by the romans remains to be easy on the eyes as well as provides support for structures.  Construction of ancient arches are held together by a keystone.  A stone carefully constructed and placed in the top center of the arch.  When removed the arch can crumble.  All of these things I will now take into account when building or designing things in the future.  Arches and circles still hold my attention when looking at modern buildings and spaces.

Photo Citations:,r:8,s:0&tx=65&ty=107

Blog Post 3 Theory and History of Design

Circles play an important role in the way buildings, sites, and spaces are designed.  An ancient and universal symbol of unity, wholeness, infinity, the goddess, female power, and the sun.  To earth-centered religions throughout history as well as to many contemporary pagans, it represents the feminine spirit or force, the cosmos or a spiritualized Mother Earth, and a sacred space.  Gnostic traditions linked the unbroken circle to the "world serpent" forming a circle as it eats its own tail. Examples on campus of where we use and see circles being used in the design and layout would be:  the Elliot University Center.  When you first walk in the front entrance from the walker parking deck, you enter into a circular foyer, which has four points of the circle one to the east(the food area), one to the west(bookstore), one to the north( the information desk) and of course the south(back to the parking deck).  If you proceed towards the north in the EUC, you will come across another circle, which is more of a crazy circle, but in all, it is still a circle.  In everyday life we use circles as places to meet and gather.  These are points that are easy to recognize and aren't as heavy in traffic flow as say a  hallway or stairwell. The place where I believe commodity, firmness, and delight are executed well on campus would be the MHRA building.  The position of the circle with the building is very attractive.  The light that pours in through its glass paneling keeps the room filled with light in the lobby when you walk in.  As you walk in it is very open and airy, giving you a sense of breathable space.  Within this circle are some setting areas for students who are either waiting on someone, or just passing the time reading and waiting for class.  There is also a winding staircase that reaches 4 floors high.  The delight factor is pretty good when you walk in, the elements in the design are very clean, and give aspects of high tech and progress, something that helps represent UNCG as a progressing university.

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Monday, January 31, 2011

Reading Response 2: History and Theory of Design 1

Blog: IAR 221 History and Theory of Design 1/ Acropolis +Xianyang

Our class was divided into our groups for this discussion.  Each group was given a specific term from the reading passage to elaborate on its importance and how both Acropolis and the Palace at Xianyang both connected and how they differ.  My group (Pegasus) was given the word Experience and here is my response to this discussion.  Both cultures valued people, I would say through experience and the materials available, each site was constructed carefully for what worked in their environment and the experience of working with those materials.  Acropolis is built upon a mountain to keep it as a "safe"  environment as well as on a high pedestal looking down on the rest of the buildings.  The Palace at Xianyang on the other hand is placed at the center of its city to show its importance.  Each building has its own extravagant ornamentation.  Simplicity was seen as more important in Acropolis as opposed to the Palace in Xianyang.  Each building was constructed based upon how society viewed it at the time.  The layout of both buildings can easily be viewed from the geometric perspective.  Acropolis setting having a more triangular shape with most of the building leading up to the main temple.  The Palace at Xianyang can be viewed as circular with the most important part(The Palace)  in the center of the cirlce and all the other buildings going outward from that point. 

Social Networking: Dominican Republic

The Dominican Republic is a small country located within the Carribean Sea. It borders the country of Haiti on the island of Hispaniola.  Making Hispaniola one of two Caribbean islands that are shared by two countries.Both by area and population, the Dominican Republic is the second largest Caribbean nation (after Cuba), with 48,442 square kilometers (18,704 sq mi) and an estimated 10 million people.  Inhabited by TaĆ­nos since the 7th century, the territory of the Dominican Republic was reached by Christopher Columbus in 1492 and became the site of the first permanent European settlement in the Americas, namely Santo Domingo, the country's capital and Spain's first capital in the New World.  The Dominican Republic has went through many trials and tribulations from Spanish rule, to strife with the French and Haitians, civil war, dictatorship briefly during the sixties, which was ended in the mid-sixties due to U.S.-led intervention.  The country now is under representative democracy led by Leonel Fernandez much past 1996.  Like most all the other countries in the world The Dominican Republic has also been bitten by the social networking bug.  The social networking phenomenon is taking over the world country by country and the Dominican Republic is no an exception, with Facebook and Hi5 in its top 10 of most visited websites. According to Vincenzo Cosenza, the man behind Vincos Blog, focusing on the topics of social networking, social media and photography, Facebook is the most popular social networking site in 100 out of 127 countries, reaching over 350 million users across the planet.  Cosenza recently published an interactive World Map of Social Networks that uses analyzed data from Google Trends for Websites to visually depict the most popular social networks by country. 
The map was first published in June 2009, when Facebook had more than 200 million users and was the most popular network in most places in Europe, Canada, Australia and the United States. The updated map shows Facebook's continuing trend of global domination. 
Non-English speaking parts of the world have been "colonized" by the Facebook takeover, and rival social networks such as Orkut (India), Hi5 (Cameroon, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico and Nicaragua), Maktoob (Libyan Arab Jamahiriya, Oman, Saudi Arabia, Yemen), Cyworld (South Korea), Lide (Czech Republic) and Skyrock (Guadeloupe and Martinique) have been almost all but replaced by Facebook.  Some regions that have not been taken over include Russia and Kazakhstan (where social network V Kontakte dominates), China (where social network QQ is the market leader), Mongolia, Thailand, Peru, Romania and Portugal (where Hi5 is the dominant social network), and in Brazil and Estonia (where Orkut is the leading social network).  The national flower is that of the West Indian Mahogany (Swietenia mahagoni). The national bird is the Cigua Palmera or Palmchat (Dulus dominicus).
The Dominican Republic has become the Caribbean's largest tourist destination; the country's year-round golf courses are among the top attractions. In this mountainous land is located the Caribbean's highest mountain, Pico Duarte, as is Lake Enriquillo, the Caribbean's largest lake and lowest elevation. Quisqueya, as Dominicans often call their country, has an average temperature of 26 °C (78.8 °F) and great biological diversity.
Music and sport are of the highest importance in Dominican culture, with merengue as the national dance and song and baseball the favorite sport.

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Reading Response : Theory of Design

Illuminated Box

Our First project of the new semester for Environmental Design class is this illuminated box.  Using the materials such as corrugated cardboard or  foam core, wooden skewers and bristol board we were to create a space.  The space was to be a five-sided box (one side open for viewing).  The interior of the box was to be white.  The dimensions of the box were 12''x 12''x 18'', with one 12'' x 12'' end left open.  By using a remote light source, e.g. desk lamp, flashlight, etc., that shines through a series of openings in the box, we were to create a pattern of light (illuminated space) within the box that divides the space into four parts.  For this project I had to think three-dimensionally, including all three sets of planes:  horizontal/floor, horizontal/overhead, and vertical/wall.  For my box, I wanted to keep it simple, keep it very minimal, because in my mind I envisioned this dark space where the light would do all the talking and give the box life.  Not to mention we were then going to add in the skewers and the bristol board.  So I proceeded to cut three slender and long rectangles on one side of the box.  Those cuts then created a space that was dark, but divided into four parts by light rays seeping through.  I then had to think of a creative way to incorporate these long skinny wooden skewers.  It would be a tricky process because these skewers would then interrupt the light that was already created.  We used the skewers to articulate and modulate (selected) planes of the space to reinforce or complement the illuminated parts of spaces that were created.  As I was working with my box and trying to figure out what to do, I thought to myself, "I want to manipulate this box to do something completely different, I want it to take on a different shape than just being plain and flat on the side that rested on the ground.  So I took my skewers and lined them up with the holes that I had cut, and pierced the box on the top side from the box.  The skewers then went through the inside and came out on the opposite side of the holes.  I did the same number of skewers as I did with the holes (three).  I then took three more skewers and did the exact same thing to the bottom of the box.  This technique created a new skeletal half box that allowed me to pitch my box onto an angle.  This allowed my box to have a corner of the box on the bottom and give my box a sense of floating.
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New Header for Blog

Now that we are turning over a new leaf with the new year, a new semester has started.  New classes, new formats, new ideas and challenges to take on.  Over the break I was inspired by different things I read, saw, and took part in.  Our first assignment for Design Visualization II was to design a new header for our blogs.  This header was pretty open ended with creativity.  We were instructed to pick a font that way liked and helped represent us as designers.  Along with the font we were to draw an image.  Something that inpsired as well as helped represent us as well.  For my font I wanted to choose something classic, but with an edge.  Something that could stand the test of time.  So I chose ENGRAVERS MT for the font.  For my image design on my header it was a tricky.  I was so undecided, because how could one image evoke what represents one person.  People are so complex and there is so much to choose from to narrow down to one image.  I then decided to go with something fun and playful, but artistic as well as something that I would never regret.  I was inspired by designer Zac Posen at the time when I started, because I had watched a talkshow on television where he was a guest.  He was showing how he was using Ombre techniques not only in his high fashion designs, but also in his home as well.  Ombre is a that takes a very rich deep color and it fades to a lighter shade  here in the photo is an example of pillow cases that have been ombred with shades of green.  The ombre technique can be seen in everything from clothing, to hair, to fabrics used in home goods.  I see it as very cutting edge as well as fun, warm, and appeasing to the eye.  For my header I decided to give it an ombre feel using shades of blue.  I chose blue because it is one of my favorite colors, I wear alot of blue because it suits my skin complexion as well as matches my eyes. 
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